- 32 pints (~18 litres) raw goat’s milk
- 5.1ml vegetarian rennet
As part of the Underground Farmers Market on September 19th i’ll be offering grilled halloumi in pita with rocket, so thought i’d better get cracking on making it!
I’ve had fantastic results with Ellies Dairy unpasteurised goat milk previously, so ordered a large batch direct for delivery on Friday, for a make on Saturday afternoon.
After having used a couple of stock pots to make cheese in for about a year now, I decided to splash out and buy a KochStar WarmMaster from Ascott, which is intended for keeping soup or punch warm, but is also perfect for cheese making!
The unit itself is massive – 27 litres capacity – but to ensure the milk didn’t burn, I also purchased an insert which decreased the capacity to around 18 litres – still pretty big!
It makes such a huge difference during the make, allowing easy modification and maintenance of temperature. My only small gripe would be that the outside gets very hot indeed, and when the water boils, it can start bubbling out around the insert.
Aside from this, it really is fantastic! Can’t recommend it enough!
After heating to 32C, I added 5.1ml vegetarian rennet diluted in previously boiled and cooled water.
No need for starter with halloumi – the unpasteurised milk has enough going on anyway!
A clean break was achieved after 40 minutes (pH 6.3), at which point it was time to crack out my other definitely-necessary purchase from Ascott – Plastic Curd Cutters!
These are a bit of a luxury, but save a fair amount of time when cutting the curd, and also keep the cauldron insert safe from knife-edge scratches.
Once the curd has rested (healed) for 5 minutes, it’s time to start raising the temperature to scald.
Target temperature is 40C, over the course of around 20-25 minutes, stirring gently by hand to keep the curd suspended – unfortunately this is quite difficult to get a picture of!
After the curd has knitted together in a cheesecloth-lined mould for an hour or so, cut it into rectangular chunks around 10cm x 8cm.
Heat the whey to around 70C, and carefully add the chunks of curd.
Maintain the temperature, gently moving the curd around from time to time for around 90 minutes, or until the curd starts to float to the surface.
At this point, carefully remove the curd and place on a draining mat to dry & cool for around 20 minutes.
Cover in a thin layer of salt, turning the pieces to ensure good coverage, rubbing in if necessary.
Leave to cool completely, then it’s ready to eat!
Home-made halloumi has a lot more texture to shop-bought, especially when grilled – the insides are almost creamy, and it’s lovely raw too!
I’ve managed to resist tucking in too much, and placed the rest in the fridge immersed in a weak brine solution, which should keep it for a few months, although hopefully it’ll get eaten before then!